Finally returning home after a month-long stint away, the Green Wave welcomed the team that started their road trip - the Louisville Wildcats. On Friday December 14, West Point outlasted the Wildcats in the second half and defeated Louisville soundly 73-55.
On Tuesday night, in a rematch that was similar to the last contest between West Point and Louisville, the Green Wave started the first quarter sluggish but were soon to answer Louisville ending the quarter ahead 21-13 and never looking back. West Pointâ€™s second half effort closed out the game as the Wave won dominantly 78-49.
In the December 14 match-up, West Pointâ€™s Demarius Calvert played a major role in the win over Louisville contributing 27 points and being a huge presence in the low post. Calvert once again was the winning factor for the Wave as he controlled the paint and put in 18 points on the night. Many of Calvertâ€™s point came from the charity stripe shooting making 8 of 11 of his free throws proving how frustrating Calvert was for the Louisville defense.
â€śHe is an undersized big man,â€ť said West Pointâ€™s head coach Brad Cox about Calvert [D.C.], â€śD.C. plays hard and uses his athletic ability a lot. He plays with a lot of heart especially against a lot of guys who are bigger than him.â€ť
West Point started the night out of rhythm allowing the Wildcats to start a 1:05 minute run which was ended by a Wave timeout. After the timeout, West Point came back refocused and answered with an 8-0 run led by A.J. Jones. The 8-0 run allowed for the Wave to settle into the game and by the midway point of the first quarter it was all even 11-11. West Point soon took over the game with great defense and offensive production as the Wave outscored Louisville 10-2 closing out the quarter up 21-13.
The second quarter was all West Point as the Green Wave out-hustled Louisville and began to get great production from Calvert and continued production from Jones. By the middle of the second period the Wave were all over Louisville 31-19. West Point finally closed out the first half outscoring the Wildcats 6-2, going into halftime up 37-21.
The Wave came out after the halftime interval sloppy and not playing to their full potential. The slip up in intensity allowed for Louisville to try and make a way back into the game. Yet, West Point was still able to hold the Wildcats at bay and continued to lead by the end of the third 56-38.
Louisville began to make a push to close down the double-digit lead bringing the game as close as 57-44. But the Wave fired back with an 11-0 run and closed out the game. West Point won the second meeting against the Wildcats 78-49.
The Green Wave will hope that this victory will begin to propel them in the right direction as only ten games are left on the schedule before the district tournament in New Hope. West Point has a lot of ground to make up in district 2 5-A and know that playing better basketball will make the road a little less arduous. Coming up for the Wave will be a non-district road trip to Okolona on Friday. The following week will consist of two district games in which West Point is slated for a trip to Oxford on Tuesday, January 15 and then a home game against Golden Triangle rival New Hope on Friday, January 18. All three games will be critical for West Point as the Wave looks to end their season on a high-note.